Playing casino games online should always be a fun activity that does not have an adverse effect on your health or your financial well-being. Responsible gambling tools help ensure that the fun does not change to stress or harm by allowing you to manage your gambling so that it does not become problematic.
There are several responsible gambling tools available. You can limit the amount of money you deposit, take a time out, set wagering limits, and self-exclude from online casinos if you feel this is necessary. Some of these tools are preventative, and others help you manage your play if you feel it’s becoming problematic.
A closer look at the responsible gambling tools available
When you play at online casinos, ensuring your online security, and protecting your own well-being are both essential. Online casino security and licensing help with the security aspects. The following responsible gambling tools protect your financial and mental well-being.
Setting deposit limits
Limiting the amount you spend on playing casino games ensures that you do not exceed what you can afford. You can set limits for different periods, such as daily or weekly. Be aware that the period you choose will often be on a rolling basis. So, if you reach your deposit limit at 13:05, you will not be able to deposit again until 13:06 the following day if you have set a daily limit. It’s also worth noting that it may take 24 hours before any deposit limits are implemented. The same applies to lifting deposit restrictions, and you will often need to speak to an advisor to do so.
Choosing to take a time-out
Time-outs, or cooling-off periods as they are also known, give you an opportunity to step back from gambling for a short period. Doing this allows you to,
- Take a breather
- Track your spending
- Stop feeling overwhelmed
- Consider if you are depending too much on gambling
You can usually choose from a variety of time-out options, such as 24 hours, 48 hours, seven days, or 30 days. The maximum time for a cooling off period is normally six weeks, but this varies depending on which site you are taking a time out from.
Setting wagering limits
In addition to limiting the amount you can deposit at an online casino; you can also limit the amount you spend while you are playing. Once you have reached any spending limit you set, you will not be able to play for the remainder of the period of your restriction even if you have money in your account.
You may also want to restrict the amount of time you can play for in one session. Doing this means that you do not get carried away and spend too much time playing when you should be doing other things. In many cases, any time limit you impose will apply whenever you are logged in whether you are actively playing or not.
Choosing to self exclude
Self-exclusion allows you to remove yourself from gambling for a specific period. Self-exclusion is a formal agreement which you cannot break once you have agreed to it. If you attempt to gamble during the self-exclusion period, the operators of the online casino will take steps to prevent you from doing so.
There are different lengths of self-exclusion available, ranging from six months to five years. You can contact each individual site you want to exclude from. Alternatively, you can use the GAMSTOP scheme to self-exclude from all UK licensed online casinos at once.
Are these tools available on sites outside of the GAMSTOP scheme?
The GAMSTOP scheme allows players who are having problems with their gambling to self-exclude from all online casinos and sportsbooks that are licensed by the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC). The scheme does not cover land based casinos or providers that are licensed in other jurisdictions. So, you may be wondering about self-exclusion and other responsible gambling measures for casinos not on gamstop, and what actions are possible.
The good news is that all reputable casinos have responsible gambling measures in place, whether they are members of GAMSTOP or not. To see what is available, just visit the “responsible gambling” or “safer gambling” section of the website. Depending on the website, you may be able to implement restrictions on your gambling using online tools or you may need to contact customer services. Normally, you will need to contact customer services to self-exclude from playing. Remember that you will need to implement any restrictions you choose at each site you use.
The same applies to both GAMSTOP and non-GAMSTOP sites when it comes to measures outside of self-exclusion. If you want to limit your spending, restrict the amount of time you spend playing, or take a time out, you will need to use the tools available at each online casino as GAMSTOP is only useful if you want to take a break from gambling altogether, by self-excluding.
The main thing to remember is that all reputable online casinos have tools you can use to protect yourself from problems with gambling. You can use preventative measures such as restricting the amount you spend or the length of time you play. You can also take a time out or self-exclude for a significant period if you feel as though your gambling is problematic. Use these measures to help keep you safe while you are playing at casinos online.